A-K Valley WPIAL soccer playoff preview capsules for Nov. 1, 2018
No. 2 Deer Lakes (17-1-1) vs. No. 4 Charleroi (18-1)
6 p.m. Thursday at Moon
Coaches: Jordan Wiegand, Deer Lakes; Jon Ducoli, Charleroi
Players to watch: A.J. Dorman, Deer Lakes; Cullin Woytovich, Charleroi
Corner kicks: The winner advances to the PIAA Class AA playoffs, which begin next week. Deer Lakes is coming off a 1-0 loss to Shady Side Academy in the semifinals. The Lancers held the possession and shot advantage but couldn’t find the back of the net. Standout midfielder Ryan Rodgers will not play against Charleroi after receiving two yellow cards in the Shady Side Academy game. A victory would give Deer Lakes its first appearance in the state playoffs. The Lancers have scored four or more goals 10 times this season. Charleroi, the Section 3-AA champion, lost, 5-0 to top-seeded Quaker Valley in the semifinals. Before this season, the Cougars hadn’t won a postseason game since 2002. Woytovich led the WPIAL in goals during the regular season with 46. He recently was named to the all-state team. Charleroi has outscored its opponents, 161-18, this season, with five double-digit goal performances.
No. 5 Springdale (15-3-1) vs. No. 3 Seton LaSalle (17-4)
7 p.m. Thursday at North Allegheny
Coaches: Cesareo Sanchez, Springdale; Ryan Kelly, Seton LaSalle
Players to watch: Mike Zolnierczyk, Springdale; Kellen Krebs, Seton LaSalle
Corner kicks: The winner advances to the PIAA Class A tournament. This is a rematch of a WPIAL semifinal game from last season, which Springdale won, 2-1, in a shootout after outscoring Seton LaSalle, 4-3, in penalty kicks. Defender Matt Taliani, Springdale’s sixth shooter, converted the winning goal. After consecutive 1-0 victories to open the playoffs, Springdale lost, 1-0, to top-seeded Avonworth in the semifinals. It was just the sixth goal the Dynamos conceded on the season. They have 14 shutouts with Zolnierczyk, a senior, in goal and Taliani, a junior sweeper, playing a key role on the back line. A win would put Springdale in the state playoffs for the second straight year. Seton LaSalle is appearing in the WPIAL consolation game for the third consecutive season. The Rebels won this game each of the last two seasons and are seeking their fourth consecutive berth in the state tournament. Despite losing forward Darryl Daniels, Seton LaSalle won the Section 4-A championship. The Rebels lost, 2-1, to No. 2 Greensburg Central Catholic in the semifinals. Krebs is a two-time all-WPIAL selection and the team’s top scorer. Three different goalkeepers have combined for nine shutouts this season for the Rebels.